Sustainable Maintenance of Office Buildings: The Current Practice in Sydney, Australia

Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
Proceedings: 38th AUBEA International Conference website, 2013, pp. 1 - 10
Issue Date:
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In Australia, approximately 2% of the demand for office buildings is satisfied annually by new construction which means that it will take 50-100 years to replace the current stock and its contribution to the environmental problem. The argument for upgrading existing buildings through sustainable maintenance is strong as it is relatively cheaper and less environmentally costly to upgrade than to rebuild. The upgrading will not only turn old buildings environmentally-friendly but also enhance their market values and competitiveness. This paper examines the role, current practices and limitations of sustainable maintenance of existing office buildings in Sydney, Australia. The paper presents the results of an industry survey conducted in November 2012 on strategies to improve current practices. The survey revealed that the most crucial aspects of sustainable maintenance for existing office buildings are efficient energy and water management; the use of environmentally-friendly materials; improved waste management; education and knowledge of sustainable methods and Government incentives to compensate for any additional costs of sustainable practices. The research found that most existing office buildings in the industry are currently maintained by non-sustainable practices. Sustainability is a relatively new concept but one that professionals are keen to introduce into mainstream practices.
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